- To create a place to relax and connect with nature.
- To create a showcase for ideas to attract wildlife to gardens.
- To make a safe place to educate and enthuse people about wildlife gardening.
- And to create a safe area to encourage people to become involved in conservation volunteering.
The New Cumnock Community Wildlife Garden project started in 2008. It is located between the swimming pool and the Afton Service Station in New Cumnock.
The East Ayrshire Strategy for Youth Group helped to design & build the site during 2008/9 as part of their John Muir Awards and with a huge amount of team work and enthusiasm created the different areas of the garden.
Local community members, New Cumnock Primary School eco-committee and New Cumnock Nursery School have all also been involved building the greenhouse and planting plants.
The Wildlife Garden
There is a different wildlife habitat to discover in each corner of the garden – each one is home to its own special wildlife.
In spring the woodland wildflowers provide food for early insects. Summer brings lots of life as plants in the bog and meadow flower. Look out for red rowan berries in autumn before the birds eat them. Winter is a quiet time in the garden – feeding the birds helps them through cold times.
Spending time in a garden full of wildlife can be relaxing and fun; it is a great way for the whole family to discover more about nature.
Gardening for wildlife is also easy and everyone can make a difference – if you don’t have room for a wildflower meadow why not fill a window box with flowers that insects will love? With a little space you can make a garden pond – in no time at all it will be a haven for frogs and insects.
The Community Orchard
In 2011 the Wildlife Garden was extended to include a community orchard. We planted native cherrys and apple varieties suited to New Cumnock with a team of volunteers and celebrated apples at the New Cumnock Gala using an apple press to squeeze some fresh apple juice!
There are four trees of each; Discovery; Katy; Laxtons Fortune & Grenadiers.
The garden was originally funded by The Lottery Breathing Places, Scottish Natural Heritage, The Cumnock & Doon Valley Minerals Trust and East Ayrshire Council. In 2011 additional funding was received from the Lottery’s Community Wildlife Fund (and as part of a bigger project from Ayrshire LEADER) to extend the garden to provide a community orchard.